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Bishop Apologises for Touching Ariana Grande Inappropriately at Aretha Franklin’s Funeral



At Aretha Franklin‘s funeral on Friday, music star Ariana Grande performed the Queen of Soul’s classic “Natural Woman” and after her performance, officiating minister Bishop Charles H. Ellis III brought her to the podium and while speaking, touched her inappropriately.

Bishop Ellis also made a joke about Ariana Grande’s name sounding like a Taco Bell menu item. The preacher was called out on social media for “groping” the singer.

Ellis, in an interview with The Associated Press at Franklin’s cemetery on Friday, apologised.

“It would never be my intention to touch any woman’s breast. … I don’t know I guess I put my arm around her. Maybe I crossed the border, maybe I was too friendly or familiar but again, I apologise.

I hug all the female artists and the male artists. Everybody that was up, I shook their hands and hugged them. That’s what we are all about in the church. We are all about love.

The last thing I want to do is to be a distraction to this day. This is all about Aretha Franklin,” he said.

Ellis added: “I personally and sincerely apologise to Ariana and to her fans and to the whole Hispanic community. When you’re doing a program for nine hours you try to keep it lively, you try to insert some jokes here and there.”

Watch the video below:



  1. Amaka

    September 1, 2018 at 12:51 pm

    Ahh!!! Pastor!!! He is really pressing the breast o. And the apology is horrible. He should have known even the hug is too deep….

  2. Hmmm

    September 1, 2018 at 2:50 pm

    He might have been doing this secretly with no consequences and has now disgraced himself publicly… of God.

  3. M

    September 1, 2018 at 2:54 pm

    I cringed while watching this. This was very inappropriate and uncomfortable, you can tell by the way she squirmed.

  4. Critique

    September 1, 2018 at 3:14 pm

    Bad on the pastor. Separately, someone should have pulled Ariana off stage and told her that her skirt was too short

  5. D

    September 1, 2018 at 4:01 pm

    Watching it was so uncomfortable for me, now imagine what it was like for Ariana. In my head it feels like when you have those uncles(random and relatives) visiting you and the only way to drive home the point that you’ve grown is by touching you inappropriately.

  6. D

    September 1, 2018 at 4:05 pm

    If watching it was uncomfortable for me, imagine what it would be like for Ariana. In my head it feels like when you have those uncles(random and relatives) visiting and the only way to drive the point that you’ve grown older is by touching you inappropriately.

  7. Uyai

    September 1, 2018 at 6:57 pm

    The pastor was tired after a long day. But he should have said what he said without touching her. He should respect himself next time and remember he is a role model to others.

  8. Objective

    September 1, 2018 at 8:22 pm

    It’s unfortunate what happened but Since no one can read his mind or intentions , it’s unfair to automatically assume that he did it on purpose….it could’ve been a honest mistake knowing fully well that he has a daughter of his own and he even mentioned her.
    I think we are too quick to assume the negative and stone people to death.
    The one good thing is that it will signal to people to be extra careful

  9. Tootsie

    September 1, 2018 at 10:27 pm

    That was repulsive! Dirty pastor! Anyone can clearly see his fingers reaching further. Thank goodness for surveillance. Liar! God has finally exposed him!

  10. Disguised

    September 2, 2018 at 10:20 am

    Shameless man

  11. Random

    September 2, 2018 at 12:29 pm

    But why would he do this publicly in full view? Seems like he may have gotten carried away or he’s a real sociopath. Looking in full context he didn’t even look at her whilst she sang. Only God knows his intentions. I hope he has learnt his lesson.

    • seriously

      September 2, 2018 at 2:12 pm

      It’s good he did it publicly. This should call for more scrutiny amd investigation. I’m pretty sure he’s been involved with some young girls at his church.
      People like that need to be exposed.
      Unless, he did it out of nervousness and anxiety.
      But his hand placement seem too deliberate

  12. Tumininu

    September 3, 2018 at 7:45 am

    Oh my goodness! this is really uncomfortable, only God knows what was running through his mind.

  13. Nora

    September 3, 2018 at 10:50 am

    Is it just my eyes or ears but I didn’t see nor hear anything inappropriate or grossly out of order! To think I was even judging him before I saw the video! No wonder Arianna hasn’t said anything!

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